A new lawyers association can now be formed to rival NBA – The Federal High Court allows

Tuesday, January 23, 2024
 – The Federal High Court in Abuja has given the go-ahead for the formation of a new lawyers’ association to rival the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA).

Ruling on the case brought by some lawyers against the Corporate Affairs Commission, (CAC) High Court Judge, Justice Gladys Olotu ordered the CAC to approve any of the proposed names submitted by the plaintiffs.

A few lawyers sued the CAC for failing to register their group as a legal practitioner body in the country.

In their lawsuit, the plaintiffs claimed that the names being considered for registration as a body of attorneys are not similar to those of the Nigerian Bar Association, which could mislead the public.

Plaintiffs proposed the following names: “Nigerian Law Society,” “Nigerian Bar Society,” “Nigerian Lawyers’ Society,” and “Association of Legal Practitioners of Nigeria.”

The judge ordered the CAS, “To approve for registration and thereafter register any of the proposed names submitted to it on behalf of the plaintiffs, being: The Nigerian Law Society,” “Nigerian Bar Society,” “Nigerian Lawyers’ Society” and “The Association of Legal Practitioners of Nigeria” and issue a certificate of registration to that effect.”

According to Olotu, the type of association the plaintiffs intend to register is covered by the right to peaceful assembly and association, which is protected by Section 40 of the Constitution, Article 10 of the ACHPR, and Article 20 of the UDHR.

To this day, the sole professional association in Nigeria for lawyers is the Nigerian Bar Association, which was founded in 1933.

Multiple groups have repeatedly applied to register as an attorneys’ association since the NBA was founded.

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